I'm doing something fun and geeky this morning, but I need to close some tabs before I can really get into it, so I'd like to tell you all that John Scalzi's book Your Hate Mail Will Be Graded, for which I wrote the introduction, is now available in trade paperback. I genuinely loved this book, and they even quoted me on the back:
Remember John Carpenter's The Thing? It's one of my favorite Sci-Fi movies of all time, and I just loved reading a story from The Thing's point of view.
I found some basic advice to self-published authors from a book publicist. This is getting printed out and added to my personal reference library.
Finally, in the comments to my last post, reader Michael asked:
As a writer, do you find yourself looking at the world a bit differently than before? Do you catch yourself being a bit more observational — trying to take in all of a given place/scene/moment instead of just "being" somewhere? Have you caught yourself running through the description of a place in your head?
All artists are compelled to do what we do, whether it's music or storytelling or painting or whatever. I don't know what it's like for other artists, but I'm only happy when I'm creating things. A big part of creating things as a writer is staying open and observant, so when I need to create something for a reader, I have memories and experiences to draw upon. This is especially important as a narrative non-fiction writer, where I can't just make something up to bridge a gap or make a story better.
I struggle sometimes to find a balance between just "being" somewhere and mentally recording what it's like to be there, butI don't really have a choice in the matter; I was doing this as an actor long before I was a writer, because I needed to have as big a mental library as possible to aid in the creation and realization of characters, and I'll keep on doing it until my last breath, I imagine.
But, to answer your question more directly: on the one hand, staying observant and really keeping all of my senses as heightened and open as I can is just part of my life, but on the other hand, it *can* make me feel like I'm the guy with the video camera who is in the room, but not really part of what everyone is doing.
I'm reprinting it here because it's a a fairly frequently-asked question, but also because I want to hear if other writers/actors/creators feel the same way.
Okay, I'm off to get my geek on. I should have something geeky and awesome to show off later today.